Samuel Chukwueze

Samuel Chimerenka Chukwueze (born 22 May 1999) is a Nigerian professional footballer who plays for Villarreal CF and the Nigeria national team as a winger.

Samuel Chukwueze
Chukwueze with Villarreal in 2018
Personal information
Full name Samuel Chimerenka Chukwueze
Date of birth (1999-05-22) 22 May 1999
Place of birth Umuahia, Nigeria
Height 1.72 m (5 ft 8 in)
Playing position Winger
Club information
Current team
Number 11
Youth career
Future Hope
New Generation Academy
2012–2017 Diamond Football Academy
2017–2018 Villarreal
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2018 Villarreal B 20 (4)
2018– Villarreal 34 (7)
National team
2015 Nigeria U17 7 (3)
2018– Nigeria 13 (2)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 14:34, 23 October 2019 (UTC)
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 20:53, 17 November 2019 (UTC)

Early life and education

Chukwueze was born in Umuahia Abia state. He is of Igbo descent and was brought up in a Christian family with a younger brother and a younger sister. He attended Government College Umuahia and Evangel Secondary School. He started playing football at the age of 8 and he admired Jay-Jay Okocha as his football idol growing up. He has been mentored by Hon. Victor Apugo whom he saw as a father, as stated in his earlier interview.[1][2]

Club career

Born in Amaokwe Ugba Ibeku, Umuahia, Abia State,[3] Chukwueze joined Villarreal CF's prolific youth setup in 2017, from local side Diamond Football Academy.[4] After being initially assigned to the club's Juvenil A squad, he made his senior debut with the reserves on 15 April 2018, coming on as a second-half substitute for Sergio Lozano in a 1–1 Segunda División B away draw against CE Sabadell FC.

Chukwueze scored his first senior goal on 20 May 2018, netting his team's second in a 3–1 away defeat of Bilbao Athletic. He contributed with two goals in 11 appearances during his first season, as his side missed out promotion in the play-offs.

Chukwueze made his first-team debut on 20 September 2018, replacing Nicola Sansone in a 2–2 home draw against Rangers, for the 2018–19 UEFA Europa League.[5] He also made his league debut on 5 November 2018, playing a 90-minute full play in a 1–1 home draw against Levante, for the 2018–19 La Liga.

In April 2019 he won the Nigeria Football Federation's 2018 Young Player of the Year award.[6]

International career

After playing for Nigeria at under-17 level, he received his first call-up to the senior team in October 2018.[7] He made his debut for the Nigerian senior team on 20 November 2018 as a starter in a 0–0 friendly draw against Uganda.[8][9]

In May 2019, Chukwueze was invited to represent Nigeria's senior team at the Africa Cup of Nations and the Under-20 team at the Under-20 World Cup. However, club side Villarreal said he could only play in one of the tournaments.[10] He was part of the Nigerian squad for Africa Cup of Nations hosted in Egypt.[11] He scored his first senior goal in Nigeria's 2–1 win over South Africa in the quarter finals.[12]

Playing style

He has been compared to Arjen Robben because of his skillset.[13]

50 for the future

The AFCON bronze medallist was on Tuesday, 30 July, revealed as one of the 50 youngsters to watch in world football by UEFA’s official website, with a worth of about $33 million. [14]

Titled: 50 for the future:’s ones to watch in 2019/20; Chukwueze, 20 was described as a "Precocious winger with UEFA Europa League experience; the Nigeria Football Federation’s young player of the year for 2017/18.[15]

Career statistics


As of match played on 23 October 2019
Club Season League Cup Other Total
Villarreal B 2017–18[16] Segunda División B 112112
2018–19[16] 9292
Total 20400204
Villarreal 2018–19[16] La Liga 265329[lower-alpha 1]1388
2019–20[16] 820082
Total 34732914610
Career total 541132916614
  1. Appearances in UEFA Europa League


As of match played on 17 November 2019[17]
Nigeria national team

International goals

Scores and results list Nigeria's goal tally first.[17]
1.10 July 2019Cairo International Stadium, Cairo, Egypt South Africa1–02–12019 Africa Cup of Nations
2.17 November 2019Setsoto Stadium, Maseru, Lesotho Lesotho2–14–22021 Africa Cup of Nations qualification





  1. "Samuel Chukwueze Biography (Exclusive Interview)". Diamond Football Academy Official Website. 3 September 2016. Retrieved 7 November 2018.
  2. Naijagood TV (14 September 2016), Samuel Chukwueze Interview, retrieved 7 November 2018
  3. "Samuel Chukwueze Biography (Exclusive Interview)". Diamond Football Academy. 3 September 2016. Retrieved 4 October 2018.
  4. "Samuel Chukwueze signs 5 years Contract with Villarreal FC". Diamond Football Academy. 5 September 2017. Retrieved 4 October 2018.
  5. "Samuel Chukwueze makes Villarreal debut in Rangers stalemate". 20 September 2018. Retrieved 4 October 2018.
  6. Okeleji, Oluwashina (2 April 2019). "'Motivated' Samuel Chukwueze wins award ahead of Osimhen and Onyekuru". BBC Sport. Retrieved 27 August 2019.
  7. Okeleji, Oluwashina (6 November 2018). "Injury forces Francis Uzoho to withdraw from Nigeria squad". BBC Sport. Retrieved 27 August 2019.
  8. "Nigeria v Uganda game report". ESPN. 20 November 2018.
  9. Okeleji, Oluwashina (22 November 2018). "Samuel Chukwueze: Youngster says Nigeria debut fulfils a dream". BBC Sport. Retrieved 27 August 2019.
  10. Okeleji, Oluwashina (7 May 2019). "Samuel Chukwueze: Villarreal winger facing Nigeria dilemma". BBC Sport. Retrieved 27 August 2019.
  11. Okeleji, Oluwashina (9 June 2019). "Africa Cup of Nations: Iheanacho left out of Nigeria squad". BBC Sport. Retrieved 14 June 2019.
  12. Benson, Max (10 July 2019). "Nigeria 2-1 Bafana - last-gasp goal as South Africa crash out of Afcon 2019". The South African. Retrieved 11 July 2019.
  13. "Samuel Chukwueze: The Nigerian who wants to be like Arjen Robben". BBC Sport. 15 November 2018. Retrieved 27 August 2019.
  14. Alaka, Jide (1 August 2019). "Five Nigerian footballers who must make sensible transfer decisions". Premium Times. Retrieved 24 August 2019.
  15. "50 for the future:'s ones to watch in 2019/20". Retrieved 9 August 2019.
  16. "Samuel Chukwueze". Soccerway. Retrieved 15 September 2019.
  17. Samuel Chukwueze at
  18. "FIFA U-17 World Cup Chile 2015 - Matches - Mali - Nigeria -". Retrieved 1 November 2018.
  19. "Awardees at DFA End of Year Party". Diamond Football Academy Official Website. 19 December 2016. Retrieved 1 November 2018.
  20. "Samuel Chukwueze Turns 18 today". Diamond Football Academy Official Website. 22 May 2017. Retrieved 1 November 2018.
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